The Expanse is one of the best sci-fi shows of the last year. Based on a series by George R. R. Martin compatriots Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck, it's like The West Wing meets Firefly meets Battlestar Galactica — a space opera set hundreds of years in the future in a solar system filled with high and low politics, colonialism and the constant fight for survival. And now, a year after it debuted internationally, we'll get it in Australia thanks to Netflix.
We wrote way back in April about how The Expanse was the best new sci-fi show you couldn't watch in Australia — but now, that's changed. Dark Horizons says Netflix has nabbed international streaming rights — almost certainly including Australia, although we're triple-checking with Netflix's Aussie team — to The Expanse's first 10-episode season.
Netflix will also get first dibs on subsequent seasons of the show, the second of which is currently in production and planned for a January 2017 release. The Expanse draws its creative inspiration almost directly from a nine-novel series, five of which have been published with the sixth, Babylon's Ashes, planned for December this year. The Expanse so far is based on the first book, with the second season bridging the gap between the first and second — so there's a hell of a lot of future material to work with.
It's a fully fleshed out world, gritty and realistic and with a solid grounding in science and physics, with an ethnically diverse character list and cast that accurately mirror the novels — like Blade Runner, it depicts a future where Earth's cultures have been mashed together and co-opted into a mangled patois as the language of the Belt. The show is also show creator Syfy's first big-budget science fiction vehicle after Battlestar Galactica, so the network absolutely wants it to succeed.
To give you an idea of how good The Expanse is, I watched the first four episodes of the show when they were streamed online by SyFy, then went and read all five books straight afterwards in a massive marathon sitting. Then I watched every other episode religiously as soon as I could get my hands on them, and now I genuinely can't wait for the second season. The second season is gonna be dope. And soon enough, you'll be able to catch up on the first series and watch along with me.